Saturday, December 17, 2011

Captain Beefheart - Still one of the most mind-blowing artists ever

This is "Bat Chain Puller" from a 1990 performance in France.

At Lyric-Interpretations, I already wrote up The Weird, Weird, Weird Story of Trout Mask Replica. This is the most widely-known album by Captain Beefheart, definitely his magnum opus.

And here's "Pena", from that album:

Don't just dismiss this as noise music. Listen to Captain Beefheart once, you'll think he was a madman spouting nonsense. Listen to him three times, you'll realize that in fact they were doing this on purpose, they meant every note and beat to sound exactly the way it did. Listen to him five times, and you'll appreciate a great experimental genius inside all that racket, somebody whose approach to composing music was so novel that it defies categorization or imitation, even to this day.

Here is Captain Beefheart's 10 commandments of guitar playing.

Rule 1:

1. Listen to the birds

That's where all the music comes from. Birds know everything about how it should sound and where that sound should come from. And watch hummingbirds. They fly really fast, but a lot of times they aren't going anywhere. 

 Here's a full discography, for further exploration. But now, I must leave you with one of his more accessible songs, "Ella Guru":